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Keith Richards on NPR's 'Fresh Air': 'We all bump into death at one time or another'

The Rolling Stones' Keith Richards was the guest Monday night on 'Fresh Air,' the daily NPR interview show hosted by Terry Gross that airs locally on KPCC (89.3 FM). Appearing as part of the media blitz for the indestructible Stones guitarist's new memoir, "Life," the fascinating, wide-ranging interview featured Richards' thoughts on, among many other subjects: the Stones' early stabs at songwriting; the rivalry between the Stones and the Beatles; Richards' relationship over the years with Mick Jagger; the infamous, deadly concert at Altamont at which the Stones used Hell's Angels as security; and the origins of the  famous guitar riff in "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction," which Richards has long claimed to have written in his sleep.

Asked Gross: "So do you think you kind of did that while you were sleepwalking?" 

"I wasn't walking, I was lying down," Richards responded. "I did it lying down, darling. I don't know about you, honey, but I do most of this stuff lying down."

If you've got 45 minutes, the exchange is well worth your time, if only for the devil-may-care tone that Richards uses with Gross. At the end of interview, when the host thanks the guitarist, Richards responds: "Hey Terry, thanks very much. Good try, honey."

-- Randall Roberts

Comments () | Archives (9)

I don't think people should support or listen to NPR, especially after they fired Juan Williams for no good reason. Keith Richards is a true icon, but as the Stones crawl to the finish line that is their career, they dilute their achievements. It is better to be like the Doors or Beatles or Gram Parsons and check out before issuing by-the-numbers releases.

NPR is a national treasure.

NPR is one of the best news outlets in the world, let alone the United States.

I just got finished donating a large check to them.

Keith Richards knows as much as anyone else about shaking Death's hand & living to talk about it.

Glad to see he's still alive & healthy after decades of abuse that would have killed dozens of less hardy persons. More lives than a cat.

And if NPR is a national treasure, I'm sure they can find a way to pay their bills on their own, with no gov't funding. Good enough for Dancing with the Stars, good enough for PC hacks. Time to grow up & leave the nest, PC Lib's.

Robert, crawl to the finish line.

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Great interview. Was kind of amazed to hear Keith flummoxed by Terry Gross's questions about misogyny in Stones songs like Under My Thumb and Yesterday's Paper. He kind of squirmed out of it by saying we all are under someone's thumb at one time or another and then "I didn't write the lyrics". Classic.

Sundays are the best. Click and Clack, Wait, Wait and Garrison make up for the shoot first attitude of Vivian. Yes you, Miss Schiller.


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